Looking for the latest food trends? The year 2020 has been marked by significant upheavals in our lifestyles, including our eating habits. Several trends have emerged: localism, alternative proteins, conscious eating, flexitarianism, etc. Some are ephemeral, while others will persist over time.
As a healthcare professional, like most people, you have probably reviewed your priorities, decided to pay more attention to your health, your well-being and especially, to what you put on your plate. Here are the top 10 food trends that will mark 2021.
This article is based on studies conducted by specialists in the field of nutrition.
1- Sustainable and environmentally friendly nutrition
Consumers are increasingly making their food choices based on criteria such as sustainability and environmental impact. In addition, they prefer to buy products with little or no packaging, ideally from local and social enterprises.
Some people even grow their own fruits and vegetables at home or in community spaces. This trend is very present in Quebec, and it is undoubtedly here to stay. In fact, as a result of this massive interest in gardening, there is a shortage of seeds this year!
Although this movement is not new, it will gain momentum in 2021. There is an increased demand for local vegan and vegetarian products. Food giants have already joined the movement and are offering vegan alternatives. It is no longer uncommon to find vegan ice cream and cheese at the grocery store or vegan alternatives to shrimp and meat.
Vegan and plant-based diets will expand into the areas of sports nutrition and clinical nutrition.
3- Personalized nutrition
With the increase in allergies, intolerances and the desire to optimize body performance, people are increasingly choosing to follow a personal health program that meets their tastes and needs.
You probably know at least one person in your family who has one of these issues and follows a particular diet.
4- Nutritional confusion
We spend a lot of time on the internet, especially on social networks. Consumers are confronted with an overload of often contradictory nutritional information. Between these gurus who all claim to be experts, it is not always easy to distinguish the true from the false.
Think about how many questions you get every day in your health care job about food related to this trend of nutritional confusion.
Misinformation on millions of blogs and social networks will continue to fuel (pun intended…) the confusion.
In the jungle of the web, make sure you only rely on reference sites. Don’t hesitate to check the qualifications of the people behind the blogs you follow. The bottom line is to double-check everything you read. Even a healthcare professional is not immune to this ubiquitous misinformation.
5- Prevention through nutrition education
The demand for nutritional treatments is growing. Consumers are increasingly aware that investing in children’s nutrition education is a powerful tool for fostering healthy habits at an early age.
Health and nutrition education has shifted from a solely physical activity approach to a more holistic approach, with nutrition and mindfulness being equally essential topics.
Note that nutritionists are more in demand than ever.
6- Alternative proteins
A growing number of people are turning to alternative proteins, particularly plant-based foods that replace cheese, sausages and meat. Consumers are also placing a high value on the ingredient list and the absence of preservatives in these foods.
7- Mindful eating
While the last few decades have been characterized by calorie counting, dieting and the yo-yo effect, there is a trend toward fewer food bans and more fun, relaxed approach to nutrition.
Mindful eating describes actively paying attention to our food every instant, without judgment. For example, breakfast may be the most important meal of the day for you, while for another person, it is not. In the end, it’s about having fewer constraints and more fun.
The pandemic has highlighted the richness of our localities and made us realize the importance of supporting local producers. Buying local has become very popular. It is important to note that this helps support the local economy and reduces our ecological footprint.
Some restaurateurs like Benny&Co, l’Épicurieux, Madame Chose, Les Enfants Terribles and many others apply localism to their menu choices. They go as far as visiting local producers to select the product that will create a WOW on the plate.
9- Sugar-free nutrition
Parents are well informed about the harmful effects of sugar-rich products. Because of the desire to teach children healthy eating habits, the anti-sugar movement will continue.
For example, you can find recipes and healthy products with no added sugar on Madame Labriski’s website.
10- Full transparency of producers and processors
Consumers are more interested in the nutritional quality of the food they buy. Gone are the days when companies would post misleading or obscure information. Today, they must be clear and transparent about their products and provide a short and understandable list of ingredients.
For example, in a desire to help Quebecers identify the many products from Quebec more easily, Aliments du Québec awards its certification of origin to all food products from Quebec or prepared in Quebec.
As you can see, several food trends are going to mark 2021. How long will they last? Time will tell. Which of these trends have you adopted?